Dedication: My daughter and every woman in the world
Trigger warning: Before reading this post, please be aware that it contains descriptions of childhood rape and sexual assault.
Its hard to write an introduction to this. I’ve waited to tell this story for almost 10 years. When I was 14, I was already no stranger to alcohol, weed, and older boys. I was in a relationship with a boy who was 19. The relationship was not going very well. There wasn’t much of an emotional connection, but that’s a different story. There was another boy who was interested in me. His name was Andy. He was 20 and I had known him since I was 12. He had dated a few friends of mine. He came off strong when he would flirt. At first, I was geninely uninterested. He had been flirting with me since I was 12 years old, but I always ignored it. I ended my relationship with the 19 year old. As soon as Andy knew, he was much more persistent. We started hanging out and at first it was innocent. We smoked pot and talked about music. I thought he was kind of corny but I was attracted to him. I was going through a very difficult depression and I clung to the attention. We kissed and cuddled sometimes, but I was not interested in sex. However, Andy was. This is where now I realize the grooming process was definitely in effect. For the next few weeks, sex became his topic of conversation whenever we talked. I wasn’t sure how to respond because I was a virgin. He picked me up from my house one night and he was very drunk. I could smell the alcohol from the passenger seat of the car. There was an empty bottle of liquor on the floorboard. He began to kiss me and put his hand in my shirt. We were making out and he put his hand down my sweatpants. I kind of backed away and grabbed his hand out of my pants. This irritated him, and he said “this is what adults do”. He also told me that a girls first time doesn’t even matter.I could feel my face getting hot and I felt embarssed. ” If you won’t have sex with me, this will never go anywhere. You’re supposed to be mature for your age, that’s why you’re my girlfriend. I’ll just find another girl who will” is what he kept repeating to me. I sat there quietly and he then grabbed my hand. He forced me to touch his penis. I felt shame immediately. It felt gross and wrong. He then asked me if I would think about everything he told me. I agreed to consider it. I was a vulnerable teenage girl. I was depressed and desperately wanted some one to love me. He drove me home and I laid in bed thinking all night. I decided I would try to have sex. I thought he loved me and that it would be fine. He came back to pick me up the next weekend. We went to his house where he lived with his mom and a roommate. He gave me a beer and tried to make conversation. My stomach was in ropes. I was too nauseous to even drink. I started to change my mind very quietly. I was panicking in my head and I shut down. He started to take off my clothes. I laid down on the bed. He got on top of me and I began to cry. I told him “no , I’m sorry i can’t”. He hung his head and didn’t say a word. “I’m not ready. I can’t do this”. He didn’t care, he ignored me and began to rape me. He held my wrists down and kept telling me to relax and stop crying. I cried out that it hurt and I pleaded for him to stop over and over again. He rolled over when he was done and I laid there numb. I was in pain and all I could do was cry. He quickly fell asleep. He didn’t care that I was crying and what he did was wrong. I don’t think he even thought what he did was wrong. I was too scared to even get out of the bed. I cried myself to sleep, but when I woke up it felt like I slept for five minutes. He sexually assaulted me again in the morning. He forced me to give him oral sex. He pulled my hair and shoved my head down and I couldn’t stop crying while this was happening. He pulled my head back and said ” It’s no good if you’re crying. You should really work on this and practice”. He got up and went to the bath room. He came back in and said “I guess we should get you home”. He drove me home. The car ride was very quiet. I walked by my mom when I got home and went straight to the bathroom. I cried in the shower for scrubbed my skin raw with my rag. I was red and bruised on my wrists. The sick and sad part of everything is that I still wanted his love. He didn’t talk to me for weeks. The relationship ended after I moved to a different state with my family. He still tried to keep in contact for years. I just wanted to forget. I didn’t tell anyone. I was scared no one would believe me or I would be judged for not fighting hard enough. I was just terrified. I tried to maintain a friendship with him but I couldn’t forget what he did to me. After 3 to 5 years of him always trying to contact me through social media, I came to grips with myself. I seen his attempts at contacting me for what it was; his attempt to maintain control over me. I blocked him on social media and have not spoke to him since. I am still ashamed of what happened to me. I am still terrified of sex. He took the meaning of sex and intimate connection and made it unimportant to me. It wasn’t until I met my husband that sex became meaningful again. My husband is the only person who knows fully what happened but not every detail because it’s still too shameful. For those years after, I suffered. I hated myself and blamed myself. I kept my secret and it almost killed me. I attempted suicide. I had unbearable nightmares about what happened that night. Sometimes when any man touches me even in the slightest friendly way, even if it’s a man that I care for, my stomach turns. This experience had made me not trust anyone at all. I’m embarrassed that I allowed my rapist to stay in my life. He never acknowldedged what happened in any conversation. We never even discussed that night for those years. I’m writing this because I decided to get help. At age 23, I finally received mental help. I was diagnosed with PTSD, Major Depressive Disorder, and Anxiety. I have been on medication since. I started counseling and it’s a process. I am done feeling ashamed and scared. I want to take control of my own life. I now a have a beautiful daughter. I am a role model to her. I want to stand up for every little girl and woman. It took me so long to realize that it wasn’t my fault. To all the survivors out there, it is also not your fault. Please don’t give up. I am here with you, fighting with you. My daughter and husband are the reason I breathe, but I have learned that I need to fight for myself. I wish all the best and open my heart to share all the love and support I have with every woman and girl reading this. There is hope. What they did to you is not your fault. You are strong, you survived the assault. You can survive this, I promise. Thank you for reading. All my love and compassion to everyone.